Modern-day slavery, female representation and outsider art are the big themes of this week’s Must-See Art Events. Today, two talks (Cheryl I. Harris at Artists Space and the Normalities Austrian Cultural Forum) look at the market-enforced instability of ‘black’ spaces and the ongoing Balkan immigration to Vienna, respectively. Two solo shows — Betty Tompkins at FLAG Art Foundation and Carla Gannis at TRANSFER — could be seen together as first- and third-wave feminist responses to female representation. And the Outsider Art Fair at the Metropolitan Pavilion — coinciding with a Christie’s sale of outsider art on January 22 — suggests the formerly niche art market sector is finally going mainstream.
The art world must have speculative fiction on the brain. The week starts with a discussion of the art of 2050 and continues with art about the seen and unseen (“the unknown” is a pervasive theme this week). There’s also a lot having to do with data: the good, the bad, and the ugly—depending on how you feel about infographics.